It’s been a whirlwind two weeks, but today is the last stop of the Steel Blood blog tour! If you missed any stops along the way, you can find the full roster at my Guest Blog page. For our final stop, author Weston Kindcade was kind enough to discuss his thoughts about Steel Empires Book 1: Steel Victory and host a short excerpt from Steel Blood for me.
[The Brit] raised one hand and bit a thumbnail, then flicked his thumb at the robed Qin. He didn’t get the insult, but his friend did. The man in pants threw the first punch, snapping the Brit’s head to the side. But the Brit recovered at once and tackled his aggressor. They both crashed to the street in a mess of limbs, leaving the robed Qin shouting above them.
It was like watching a train wreck, exactly the sort of political bullshit Victory had been concerned about dealing with. But she had expected pointed jibes over state dinners and cocktail parties, not brawling in the streets. This was embarrassing for everyone. She passed Mikelos her overnight bag and waded into the fray….
Head over to Kincade’s blog to see the rest and make sure to check out his fiction while you’re there. I hope you’ve enjoyed taking this journey with me!
Steel Blood is available in hardcopy and ebook formats at the following online retailers:
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Raw Dog Screaming Press
Seriously, it’s the end of the tour. What are you still doing here? I have cats to snuggle and writing to get back to.
Oh, you want more?
Check back here on August 21st (or better yet, subscribe to this blog so you don’t miss anything) for a fun contest announcement! You’ll have a chance to win a hardcopy or ebook of your choice from the Steel Empires series!
Author Jennifer Loring asking me the ever-important question about writing in the fantasy genre. What makes my vampires and other supernatural creatures stand out from the crowd? How did I put my own spin on the mythology while still making my characters recognizable? Take a quick look:
My vampires fit the mold in that they’re essentially immortal creatures who drink blood to sustain themselves and can’t be out in direct sunlight. They are apex predators who have evolved to be humanity’s greatest hunter. But rather than slathering monsters, for the most part my vampires are part of a civilized society that would much prefer a cold beer to the hot blood of an unwilling victim.
Along with vampires, I also discuss werewolves, who have been a part of this series since the first book, and weredragons, a recent newcomer to the pantheon on the Steel Empires. I hope you check it out.
While you’re there, take a look at some of Loring’s available work! She’s a prolific author who writes in a variety of genres, so there’s sure to be something for everyone.
Tomorrow is the LAST STOP of this blog tour!! It’s been a wild ride, and I appreciate everyone who’s joined for the fun. We’re closing things out at Weston Kincade‘s blog, with a final book excerpt. Obviously a Romeo & Juliet pastiche has to have the requisite “No, sir, but I do bite my thumb, sir” scene!
The weather is spectacularly stormy here in my corner of Maryland today. I can only assume that the star of Steel Magic, storm-mage Toria Connor, is perturbed that all the attention has been on Victory lately as the main character in Steel Blood.
Too bad for both of them, though, because today the focus is on me! Fellow Seton Hill University Writing Popular Fiction grad Jacob Baugher interviewed me on his blog today, for the latest stop on the tour.
What is your writing kryptonite?
The biggest obstacle to my writing time is definitely my Netflix addiction. My queue is enormous, partly because some shows I literally don’t have time to watch during their season, even with DVR, and partly because there are some shows that I just have to keep watching now that I’ve started, no matter how outside my genre (Scandal, Reign, Hawaii 5-0). On the other hand, Netflix’s new ability to download episodes has been amazing, because during the months of the year when I’m drafting a new book, I can limit my Netflix time to my treadmill time. Watching an episode takes about the same amount of time it takes me to speed-walk 5k, so everyone wins!
Check out the rest of the interview on Baugher’s blog, and while you’re there, drop him a note and tell him to get back to working on his novel! I read the beginning of it when he was still a student, and I’m anxiously awaiting the day it gets published. (There’s a violinist, which means it already has a special place in my heart.)
Tomorrow, I’ll be visiting author Jennifer Loring to talk about what makes my supernatural creatures stand out from the rest!
Yesterday, we got a look at the more “human” side of my main character, the vampire Victory (over here, if you missed it). And while I love that scene, it’s not unique — being a vampire is just part of who Victory is, which also includes being a partner, a mother, a politician, a mercenary, etc. Today, fellow RDSP author Maria Alexander asked me to talk about why I write urban fantasy for a primarily horror publisher. Well, it’s because I think the monsters are people, too. A quick look:
Urban fantasy allows me to explore that sense of “otherness” using the supernatural, just as science-fiction has been teaching us about humanity through the lens of alien races for decades. Though still incorporating elements of monstrousness, supernatural creatures can be an equal part of society in open-world urban fantasy. That unique facet draws me in, and challenges me to create well-rounded characters no matter their species.
While you’re there, be sure to check out BOTH of Alexander’s award-winning RDSP novels, Mr Wicker and Snowed. She’s also much better at using her blog as an actual blog than I am, and there are some great gems. (Not that any of you have complained about my book reviews, thankfully.)
Tomorrow, author Jacob Baugher asked me to answer some interview questions about both my writing and Steel Blood!
Author Anna Zabo offered to host a short excerpt from Steel Blood on their blog for this stop of the blog tour!
The scene takes place near the beginning of the novel, when Victory and Mikelos have arrived in the Qin Empire’s colonial city of Jiang Yi Yue. As a vampire, Victory was prepared to wait on the ship until night fell to safely transfer to the palace and begin her mercenary contract as a bodyguard to the Qin princess. But the British delegation would have none of that, and arranged for alternative transportation.
Sound interesting? Click the link above to get the full story!
While you’re there, I highly recommend checking out Zabo’s work. I literally devoured one of their entire series in less than a week, and they are definitely one of the reasons I have to claim to be a romance fan now!
If you thought this excerpt humanized Victory, tomorrow I’m stopping by fellow RDSP author Maria Alexander‘s blog to talk about why I think monsters are people, too.
Author and editor Jennifer Brozek (currently living the live I sometimes envision for myself) was kind enough to host me on her regular blog feature: Tell Me.
So, I told her all about how I was inspired to make up some new rules (and then break them) as I started the process of writing Steel Blood. A quick look:
Something else I’ve learned is that rules are meant to be broken. I’d love to write every day, but I manage it when my time and spoons allow. Writing is a priority, but yesterday was dedicated to hacking an IKEA media stand with my husband, because life is a priority, too. And urban fantasy is always my go-to genre, but I’ll read anything that’s well-written, whether it’s as similar as epic fantasy or as different as a cozy mystery.
In that spirit, I’d like to propose a new “author” rule—and why you should break it.
Find out the rest on Jennifer’s blog, and while you’re there, check out some of the other exciting projects she always seems to be up to her ears with!
Tomorrow, author Anna Zabo hosts another short excerpt from Steel Blood on their blog. Victory is about to encounter something she hasn’t seen in a LONG time.
Because our books are being released a week apart, I teamed up with fellow RDSP authors Lee Murray and Dan Rabarts to do a bit of cross-promotion. This morning, I interviewed the main characters of their upcoming novel, Hounds of the Underworld, on my blog, and they were kind enough to do the same! A quick look:
Master Victory, which of your roles would you say makes you feel most alive? Mercenary, mediator, or mother?
Alive is an interesting word choice there, isn’t it? I spent the majority of my life as a mercenary, fell into the mediator role when I retired and accepted the mantle of Limani’s Master of the City, and became a mother to a child in need. Through circumstance rather than premeditated choice, but I have no regrets there. Certainly, all of those roles have moments that can elicit extreme emotion. But life isn’t just the exciting or dangerous bits. Life is what happens in between. So, I think I’d have to go with hanging out with my family, sharing some drinks and laughs, as the time when I feel most alive. My roles are part of that because they are what led me to this point in my life, to have those experiences.
For the full interview, please visit the blogs of either Lee Murray or Dan Rabarts. While you’re there, make sure to check out some of their other work to get you hyped up for Hounds of the Underworld!
Tomorrow, I’ll be participating in the author Jennifer Brozek’s “Tell Me” feature on her blog!